I don’t know if now more than ever in my life I’ve dealt with more imposter syndrome. I’m afraid that at any second someone could call me out for being a fauxtographer or not doing things how “professionals should”. The thing is every where I turn other people feel the same way, degree, experience or not, we all feel like frauds from time to time. I think it comes with uncertainty in not knowing all the answers or at any given time things could not go as planned and we don’t know if we are prepared for that.
I want to let you know today, friend, that if you feel like an imposter or your not sure what your next move in life is, that means you care. You care about what you’re doing, you care about others and how it may impact them. You care about growing, learning more and being the best version of you to offer yourself and those around you. That’s a big deal. That’s something to be proud of. It can be hard when from the outside you either look like you’ve got it all together (thank you, Social Media) or you look like your stuck in the same spot you have been for the past 5 years. Let me tell you something, other people’s versions of you are not who you actually are. The longer we sit and worry about the thousands of versions of ourselves that are out there, the longer it will take our actual self to grow + become who we are truly meant to be. OWN YOUR VERSION OF YOU.
I’ve got 4 hacks for you that have helped me start to own it. I say start because I’m a long ways off, but if I can do any of these things so can you.
#1. MAKE TIME FOR YOU.
We hear this ALL the dang time, but I’m not talking time to get away and do your nails or clothes shop. I’m talking about making time for self development. Get up 30 minutes earlier and go on a run (this is what I started doing and I’m as far from a runner as it gets but trust me, I’ve been the best version of me lately. I even signed up to do a 5K with a friend.), take a course or a class, read a new book, find a hobby. Things that require you to learn new things and feel good about what you’re accomplishing do a lot for your mental + physical health. Promise.
#2. PRAY/MEDIATE/READ THE BIBLE.
In the busy of life, marriage, kids, school, work let’s be honest making time for God can sometimes be an easy thing to put off. When you’re worried, anxious or struggling the best thing to do is hand it over to God or read some scripture about whatever you’re going through. Even if you feel like you don’t have time to set aside right now, listen to some worship in the car, podcast, audiobooks, whatever.
#3. STOP SCROLLING SOCIAL MEDIA.
I don’t mean all together, even though we all know we could cut down the time spent on phones + computers. It’s as simple as this: unfollow people who aren’t a positive influence in your life or believe in those versions of you that aren’t truly who you are. Tip: If you feel rude unfriending people on Facebook, just unfollow them!
#4. STOP WORRYING ABOUT WHAT YOU THINK YOU SHOULD BE DOING AND DO WHAT THE HECK YOU WANT TO DO.
This is my most important and favorite step of all. STOP DOING THIS. I still worry about it. Whenever I text a client or send them an email, I always think, “Is this how I should be talking to a client? Is this professional enough? What if they don’t like how I talk?” OWN YOUR YOU. Talk how you’d talk to a friend, don’t make yourself someone you’re not. There are no standards, “to be the perfect most successful person you should say this and in this manner and do these things” because honestly for one, if every one did the same things the same way can we say B-O-R-I-N-G. These things are what make you, you. Secondly, don’t you think if there was a handbook for direct success and communication and owning life exactly how you’re supposed to there would be a book about it, we would all have read it and we would all be doing it, but there’s not. Do: whatever makes you happy, go with your gut, things that fill your soul, lift up others, learn as you go because NO ONE is perfect or has all the answers. DON’T: question your worth, settle, do things mediocre, accept that this is just how it is and that’s that because YOU CAN DO ANYTHING. I realize this sounds cheesy as heck, but no one can come and live your life for you. Sometimes I think that’s kind of scary, that I have to be the one to make what I want to happen happen, but there’s beauty in that. If you can control what happens to you, along with God, you can choose how to light up others and do anything you set your mind to.
I hope this has helped you realize your value and just know, we’re all imposters, hopefully the best versions of them we can be.